Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Las Vegas (or is it Lost Wages)

There I was, about two or three blog-posts ago, saying that I thought I should get my bills paid off so that I could start saving for a new pistol. That was before I heard my wife and daughter saying how great it would be to visit Las Vegas in the not too distant future. They want to get away from all this global warming here in the northeast USA. As I write, it is 13 degrees Fahrenheit, as per, yeah - lots of that global warming BS going around recently. 

Somehow today, I found myself looking for decent deals for just such a trip for them. I went upstairs to ask them a question, late this afternoon, and there was my daughter trying to plan the same trip. She let me do it! I got finished making reservations with Southwest Airlines not all that long ago. They will be going for 3 night stay in about a month or so. As could have been expected (and as I guess I well knew) - no husbands allowed. Nice to see them bonding but wishing I was going too.

Not a bad deal, just under $600 apiece for airfare and 3 nights at a 4 star hotel on the strip. Not like it was 10 or 15 years ago when you could get round trip airfare for about $80 but not bad by today's standards. I guess I will be stuck here walking the dogs and feeding the reptiles. Oh well, somebody has to do it.

Anyway, it now seems that the bills getting paid off and me saving for a new pistol will be delayed somewhat - unless of course the wife wins big and generously throws me a bone.

All the best,
Glenn B

A Loyal, Dedicated, Honorable and Fascinating Man Has Passed

I vaguely remember, but do recall, back in 1974 when the news broke about Hiroo Onoda finally surrendering to then Philippine president Ferdinand Marcos. What makes a man surrendering to the authorities something memorable?  In this case is was that Mr. Onoda was a soldier in the Japanese Imperial Army during WWII, an Intelligence officer to be more exact. In 1945, his superior officer ordered him to remain behind on Lubang Island in the Philippines to collect intelligence on the American forces there. Even though Japan had surrendered in that year, Onoda remained on the island and carried out his orders, he did so for 29 years after the end of the war. He was never deterred from doing so, he was loyal and dedicated to duty for all that time. He survived on Lubang, stealing food, and wearing his by then overly patched army uniform for all those years. Even though a few attempts had been made to tempt him out of the jungle, with his family members making pleas for him to surrender (Japan had flown his family to the island), he did not come out of hiding until subsequent to 'globe-trotter' set camp near his location and tempted him into his camp. That globe-trotter notified Japanese authorities who then flew Onoda's former commander to the island to give him an order to surrender on his 52nd birthday.

Imagine that, being so loyal to your country and dedicated to duty as to remain behind, virtually as the 'last man standing, against all odds and doing it for 29 years and then not thinking that you had made a mistake or wasted your time. If that is not fascinating, nothing is at all.

Now he is gone, dead at the age of 91. Read more about him here at Fox News and here at Wikipedia, the sources for the above. His story is pretty awe inspiring. I commend his actions, honor his memory and offer my condolences to his loved ones even though he was our enemy. There are not many men among all of us as honorable as he. Yet, he was not he last Japanese Army holdout. In December of 1974, only months after the surrender of Ondoa, Teruo Nakamura was captured on Morotai Island in Indonesia. Nakamura was the actual last man to serve the Japanese Imperial Army of WWII. He passed in 1979, only 5 years after his capture. Absolutely amazing.

All the best,
Glenn B